http://gpsinformation.net/ wrote:Some people suggest that the Quad Helix antenna is "best" consumer GPS antenna under tree cover. This is not categorically true. There is little difference in performance between patch and quad helix antennas which have the same effective APERTURE. Aperture is directly proportional to antenna size and antenna gain is proportional to antenna aperture. Note that the Garmin G-12xl, G-12map, and eMap (among others) have a patch antenna while the G-76 series and the Magellan Meridian series use quad helix antennas. These models all have similar performance and sensitivity. All GARMIN models except the GPS 12 and eTrex series can be used with an external antenna. Some recent Magellan models have external amplified antenna capability.
The more recent units do have slightly more sensitivity but this is due more to improvements in semiconductor technology than anything else. The trend of improvements in effective sensitivity in newer technology units is likely to continue for the forseeable future and is not necessarily related to antenna type.
Note also that the eTrex models are more compact units than the others listed. As a result, they have slightly less antenna gain (on the order of perhaps 2db
less) than the physically larger models and thus will have slightly less sensitivity which may be important under forest canopy.
Thus, as a rule-of-thumb, physically larger GPS receivers are likely to have better forest canopy receive performance than more compact units regardless of
big_load wrote:I have an older Garmin 60CS (before the x). If I were buying today for trail use, I'd go for the Garmin eTrex Vista HCx. It has great sensitivity and battery life and is very lightweight. My second choice would be the 60CSx.
Grasshopper wrote:..the HCx does not have an adequate design solution to hang your GPS on your pack shoulder strap.. the 60CSx has a great in the box solution with a relatively strong clip to attach high on your pack shoulder strap that the 60CSx unit attaches to;
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